Happy National Park Week!
Our beautiful state has 18 national parks and historic sites, attracting more than 7.5 million visitors last year. The outdoor recreation industry here in Washington supports more than 200,000 jobs and contributes more than $26 billion each year in economic activity. And our national parks, including the beautiful North Cascades National Park in the First Congressional District, provide many invaluable opportunities for education and recreation.
But there’s more that Congress can do to support our public lands. It’s time we permanently reauthorize the Land Water Conservation Fund (LWCF), a critical conservation program that has invested $637 million in Washington projects. Congress should also pass the National Park Service Legacy Act, a bill I’ve cosponsored to reduce the maintenance backlog at our parks. What's more, these projects come at no cost to taxpayers because they are funded through oil and gas receipts paid by energy companies.
I also helped lead a bipartisan resolution this month to recognize the impact climate change has on the outdoor economy and the need for policies to protect our land and water. Right here in Washington’s First Congressional District, we’re seeing up close the damage that climate change is having on our way of life. Whether it’s longer and worsening fire seasons, increased pests and invasive species, an acidifying ocean and more unpredictable natural disasters, the effects of climate change are a growing problem that must be addressed immediately. It’s time we invest in meaningful steps to build a new green economy and find innovative solutions to address climate change for the health of our planet and future generations.contact me through my website. You may also keep up-to-date on what I’m doing by following me on social media or signing up for my eNewsletter. If you need assistance dealing with a federal agency, such as the VA, IRS or Department of Education, please do not hesitate to contact my Bothell office at (425) 485-0085.